The underdogs are on a mission to upset the natural order.
For the Fallon girls track team, that means pulling off its share of upsets in hopes of securing a top two finish at today’s state track meet at 3 p.m. at Silverado High School in Las Vegas. Saturday’s meet begins at 8 a.m.
The Lady Wave are lying in the weeds and aim to pull off several upsets of their own. Last year, Fallon finished second, but this season has been a bit rough for the Lady Wave.
Only 19 athletes participated in last week’s regional meet, although nine including four members of the 4x400 relay team qualified for the state meet.
“That shows that our girls did everything the could,” Fallon coach Paul Orong said. “Faith Lutheran has at least one or two kid in every event, so it’s going to be really tough.”
Led by star Elena Murray, the Fallon junior qualified in four events including the 100 hurdles, 200 and long and triple jumps.
She ranks first in the triple jump, second in the 100 hurdles, fifth in the long jump and seventh in the 200. Orong, though, said he would not be surprised to see Murray atop the podium in every event except the 200.
The 200, however, is Murray’s weakest event, meaning she has only run it three times this season. Her time is consistently dropping, but defending state champ Quinn Parker of Truckee is one of two quality challengers.
“We are trying to peak at state,” Orong said. “Everyone is going to underestimate us because of our times and distances at regionals. We told our kids all we want to do is qualify.”
Joining Murray are Abigail Belbin in the long and triple jumps, Julianne Hale in the high jump and triple jump.
Fallon also qualified two pole vaulters, defending state champ Maddie Alegre and Kelsey Reibsamen. Alegre was second at the regional with a height of 9 feet, six inches lower than Elko’s Vivian Neff.
Reibsamen, meanwhile, qualified for her first state meet in the pole vault. As for Alegre, Orong expects another title.
“I told her you are still the champion until someone beats you,” he said.
The Lady Wave also qualified their 4x400 relay team of Alexis Romero, Allison Shirley, Mikayla Harris and Patricia Leggett. The team has only run together the past three meets and currently is 1 second off the school record.
In addition, the foursome dropped four seconds during their regional run, but come into state seeded eighth. Despite the ranking, Orong is confident the team will leapfrog numerous teams and possibly secure a top four finish.
“We are going to surprise everyone,” he added. “I love being the underdog.